Dubuque crime study compares Eastern Iowa cities - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque crime study compares Eastern Iowa cities


DUBUQUE (KWWL) -- A crime study in Dubuque has been released and it's very detailed. This, coming after the City Council and Safe Community Task Force recommended officials take a deeper look at the perception of crime.

Monday, we told you what the study would include and how it was conducted, now we take a look at some of the crime stats in Dubuque compared to those in a few other Eastern Iowa communities

A 782 page document detailing the findings of a Northern Illinois University crime study is anything but easy to analyze.

"It put a statistical value on what we've been saying for years," said Police Chief Mark Dalsing.

The first hundred pages of this document contain detailed literature review with stats, survey results and Section 8 details. Specially comparing Dubuque to ten other Iowa cities including: Ames, Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs, Davenport, Des Moines, Iowa City, Sioux City, Waterloo and West Des Moines.

"The report showed that we weren't statistically different than the other communities. We have our peaks and valleys," Dalsing said.

Take homicides for example for example, specifically in Eastern Iowa, then data was collected over 6 years: Waterloo saw .33 homicides per 10,000, Iowa City with .25, Cedar Rapids saw .21 and Dubuque came in last with .2 homicides per 10,000 people.

The same goes for robberies, over the course of 6 years. Waterloo saw 14 per 10,000, Cedar Rapids with 9.4, Iowa City with 7 and Dubuque 4.4.

But Dubuque is in the middle on burglaries: with 91 per 10,000. Compared to 126 in Waterloo, 94 in Cedar Rapids and Iowa City with the lowest with 54.

Where Dubuque lead the group: aggravated assaults, with 84 Waterloo with almost half that. And Iowa City and Cedar Rapids with a fourth of that at 24 and 2.

But officials here in Dubuque say you can't take the statistics alone. The study shows that the perception of crime is equally as important as what they numbers show.

For example if someone doesn't feel safe in the downtown during daylight. They are likely to assume that its not safe at night and therefore draw other conclusions about crime. City leaders are going to do their best to change those perceptions, including the perception of Section 8 housing and it's link to crime. The study shows no direct link but instead a link to poverty and crime. And that is something that can be seen across Eastern Iowa.

The study found most of the crimes in Dubuque are committed in the eastern part of the city which falls within an area along Central Avenue and north of Dodge Street.

The study found that community policing is an effective way to reduce crime. That is something the Dubuque Police department is already doing. And closed circuit TV's (CCTV) in parking lots and public areas can reduce crime.

Again if you'd like to see the study in its entirety, it's available on the city website.

The safe community task force is reviewing the study and will take it's recommendations to the city council.

Online Reporter: Lauren Squires

Follow Lauren on Twitter.

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